'I can’t speak highly enough of him' - McKenna's praise for 'mentor' Aluko

Sone Aluko waves to the fans at Gillingham.

Kieran McKenna sees Sone Aluko as an extremely positive influence on the Ipswich Town squad - Credit: Pagepix Ltd

Manager Kieran McKenna has praised Sone Aluko’s contribution both on and off the pitch for Ipswich Town. 

Aluko, the oldest player in the Ipswich squad at 33, has been a consistent performer since finding his groove at Portman Road, following his arrival as a free agent in the summer. 

The attacker’s technical ability and clever use of the ball has proven to be a valuable asset to McKenna, but his contribution away from games has been vital too. 

“I can’t speak highly enough of him as a person really, around the place he’s great with the younger players, he mentors, he speaks, he gives advice but he never sticks it in your face, he doesn’t go around telling everyone that he’s played in the Premier League,” McKenna said. 

Sone Aluko fires in the ball.

Kieran McKenna sees Sone Aluko as an extremely positive influence on the Ipswich Town squad - Credit: Steve Waller - stephenwaller.com

“But he’s there for advice whenever people need it. He has a quiet word in his own way whenever it’s needed. 

“He holds really high standards himself in terms of how he goes about his business so he sets a good example for others to follow. 

“And on top of that he’s obviously still very able to contribute on the pitch. He contributes in training and he’s contributed well whenever he’s had his minutes. 

Most Read

“I enjoy a really good relationship with him, I enjoy speaking with him about the team here but also about his experiences and different teams and managers and coaches that he’s played with. 

“It’s really positive to have him at the football club and really happy with how he’s going about his work.” 

Aluko has been in-and-out of the Ipswich line-up under McKenna, featuring in 11 of the Town boss’s 15 games with seven coming from the start. 

“It’s important that we manage him in the right way, both in training and in terms of his match minutes,” McKenna added. 

Aluko signed a one-year deal with the Blues in August, with the club holding the option to extend his stay by a further year.